James Galanos Makes A Rare Visit To FIT

by SAMANTHA QUEEN · May 9, 2008

     James Galanos

    Go HERE for more photos from this event by Queen Samantha.

    Our Photogs are doing some write ups, and now our writers are becoming photogs:

    Museums in NYC Have Nothing on FIT… at least, not after last Wednesday night’s soirée. To celebrate the donation of 18 James Galanos pieces to the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) Museum by Douglas E. Simms, James Galanos himself made a rare appearance in New York last night at FIT’s John E. Reeves Great Hall. Galanos, aged but dapper, smiled as models strutted around the perimeter of the Great Hall in his 18 designs, each garment dating back to the 1960’s. Prior to the show, Kelly Cutrone of People’s Revolution could be seen around the Hall along with staff, all identifiable by virtue of their high frequency and black ensembles and all scrambling to ensure perfection. Rest assured, this was a more relaxed show for Cutrone – hardly the 5-show circus that she is used to orchestrating – and she and her staff were entirely friendly.

    As a side story, we managed to catch Cutrone and Simms outside and learned that, in addition to being a wildly successful fashion PR boss, she is also a single mom who bakes cookies for her staff. We hope to see this softer side of Cutrone in upcoming episodes of the Hills, as we find little more inspirational than a power chick wielding a diaper bag and a spatula ... and to the tune of great success, at that.

    Once the show began, a nostalgic but celebratory mood descended on the crowd as the Supremes and Frank Sinatra emanated from above. Simms, president of SIMMS Foundation – an organization devoted to cancer research, among other causes – looked dashing as he stood with Galanos, using the garments (and the models) as the backdrop for a photo opp. Simms acquired the collection through bequest of his mother, Marie Bohlman Simms, who died of cancer at age 44. Seated with Galanos, FIT President Dr. Joyce F. Brown and other elites, Simms seemed at once uneasy and in place.

    And of course, this high profile event doubled as an exhibition of final projects from FIT’s graduating Associate class. The student pieces, all women’s fashion inspired by Galanos designs, were displayed on mannequins in the center of the Hall. Upon inspection, we decided that some were more inspired (i.e. less original) than others; but all were beautiful and we look forward to bringing you our favorites, along with an interview with Lauren Keates, designer of what was perhaps our favorite student work on display.